On Wednesday, April 13, a British family on a holiday was savagely attacked in Hua Hin, a popular resort in Thailand.
Warning: Graphic content
Businessman Lewis Owen, 68, his wife Rosemary, 65, and their 43-year-old son whose name is also Lewis were mercilessly mauled by at least six drunken thugs after the younger Lewis accidentally bumped into one of the suspects.
The shocking incident was caught on CCTV, and the footage has gone global since it was published on social media.
The elderly couple from Wenvoe in the Vale of Glamorgan, have been visiting Thailand since the 80’s. They go there during the Songkran festival or the Thai New Year, which is celebrated every 13th to 15th of April. Apparently, it falls the same day as Mr Owen’s birthday.
The pair was supposed to stay in the country for a month with their son, who works as a graphic designer in Singapore.
But on that fateful day, what was supposed to be a day of merriment turned into a nightmare for the Owen family.
In the video, you’ll see Lewis and his parents walking along the busy street of Soi Bintabaht at around 2 o’clock in the morning. They came from a bar and were about to head home when someone on the street called them. After a few seconds, the younger Lewis and his parents continued to walk.
Lewis then nonchalantly put his hand out after accidentally bumping into a local man who was walking in the opposite direction
The yob immediately turned and pushed Lewis to the ground
A skinny man approached the scene as Rosemary tried to reason with the man who pushed her son
During what seems to be a heated argument, she slapped the assailant on the face. At least four more men suddenly turned up and gathered around Mr and Mrs Owens. Lewis went back up to protect his mother. One or two of the locals tried to intervene, but the gang started to attack the family.
One of the hooligans ran up to Mr Owens in order to punch him with the most force possible. He fell to the ground and was mercilessly kicked by the same punk.
Rosemary tried to escape, but one of the bullies walked up to her and punched her so hard in the face that she flew to the floor and was knocked unconscious. Meanwhile, the troublemakers continued to beat her husband and son.
When Rosemary regained her consciousness and tried to prop herself up, one of the callous goons walked over and kicked her face with such an extreme force that her head snapped back—leaving her out cold once again.
By the time the group had finished their cruel, heartless attack, the three victims were just lying on the floor
The crowd could only watch as the family was being mauled. Those who tried to stop the hoodlums end up being beaten as well. The bystanders only dared to help once they were sure that the gang had left.
According to Lewis, the police did not want them to watch the footage because the “assault was so violent.” He only got to watch it on Thursday morning.
“The police would not let me watch the video because it was too violent.
“I watched it today and it is horrendous.
“I have been speaking to my mum and dad every day. I did not realise how badly we were beaten up,” Lewis said.
“We had never seen the guys before we left the bar we were in.
“I do not remember much because I was knocked unconscious and there were stitches in my head.
“We were lucky because it was all caught on CCTV,” he added.
He said he was not sure why the men attacked.
“I didn’t know them, it was just random.
“My mum and dad are quite old, and they kicked her in the head and punched him.”
Lewis and his father required stitches for their head injuries while Rosemary suffered serious head and eye injuries.
A press conference was held on April 17. A spokesman for the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) announced that Royal Thai Police had apprehended six people and charged them with grievous assault, The Mirror reports.
Suphatra Baithong and Yingyai Saengkham, both aged 32, and Siwa Noksri, 20, were captured within days following the attack. Chaiya Jaiboon, 20, was arrested on Thursday.
The police said that the suspects apologised to the victims.
“The men say they are sorry and that they wouldn’t have done this if they weren’t drunk,” Chief Police Colonel Chaiyakorn Sriladecho told The Associated Press.
Dave Cannon, a long-time friend of the Owens who has been to Thailand with the couple, told MailOnline,“They always go to the festival, it is a part of their holiday.
“It is a family joke – Lew reckons the whole of Thailand is celebrating his birthday that day,” he said.
“They love it out there. They used to travel around Vietnam Laos and Cambodia but they always return to Thailand, it’s their favourite place.
“They go sightseeing and have made lots of friends over there.
“Their Thai friends bake a cake every year for Lew’s birthday.”
Mr Cannon added,“They are lovely people, we’ve been friends for years.”
Due to their gruesome experience, Lewis vowed never to return to Thailand ever again. He said:
“I’m not going back to Thailand again. Mum and dad won’t be either. Never, ever again.
“My mum and dad are on the mend so it is all okay. Dad had six stitches on his forehead, and there is some heavy bruising, and he had two black eyes. They were a bit worried about my mum but she is okay. The swelling was not going down on her brain but they have done some operations.”
“Mum and dad have been going to Thailand for a long time. I don’t get to see them very often, I see them at Christmas and at my dad’s birthday,” he added.
Lewis has returned to Singapore. Rosemary, however, has since been released from the hospital. She and her husband are expected to return to the UK next week.
Watch the video:
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